How to use the DragonSpeak Editor
The DS Editor is the program that you'll use to add scripting, which on Furcadia is called DragonSpeak, to your Dreams. Before going into detail on how to use the editor, first here's a brief explanation about DragonSpeak. DragonSpeak is meant to be a plain English way of scripting items to do things in your Dream. You can go from extremely simple to complex if you're into programming, but the majority of the things you want to do can be done with ease.
In essence, DragonSpeak is a series of causes and effects which are written in English so everyone can learn it. Broken down into its essence, DragonSpeak script sounds like this: "If this happens, then do this." When it's in the DragonSpeak editor, it looks like this:
(0:9) When a furre arrives in the dream
(5:15) move the triggering furre to (10,10), or to someplace nearby if it's occupied.
Each line of DragonSpeak begins with a set of numbers in parenthesis, separated by a colon, because Furcadia only utilizes numbers and ignores words. The first number in a line of DragonSpeak describes what category it belongs to. The numbers after the colon are specific to the command you want it to do. In the example above, (0:9) is the Cause, or trigger. (5:15) is the Effect. So this means that somebody will move to coordinate (10,10) only when the trigger happens: in this case it is when someone comes into your Dream.
There are 5 categories of DragonSpeak, and here they are listed out:
(1:??) Additional Conditions
When you're writing DragonSpeak, the only thing you are required to have in order to make it work is a Cause, followed by one or more Effects. This means that you don't have to use Additional Conditions, Areas, or Filters. But, if you don't include an Area, then the default area is everywhere on the map.
While your Dreams are saved as .map files, your DragonSpeak files are saved as .ds files. Every Dream is composed of two files - the .map file and the .ds file. Even if you create a brand new Dream and never once use the DS Editor, you'll still have two lines of script in your Dream that "tell" a player where to appear in your Dream. Here is this block of DragonSpeak again, for reference:
(0:9) When a furre arrives in the dream,
(5:15) move the triggering furre to (10,10), or to someplace nearby if it's occupied.
Now that you have a basic idea about DragonSpeak, you will be able to make your Dream come to life! There are more aspects to using DragonSpeak, but all those details are will be covered in their own DragonSpeak tutorials.
To open up the DragonSpeak Editor, called the DragonSpeak Constructor, you can either click on the DragonSpeak Constructor program in your Furcadia folder, or you can use the DragonSpeak menu in your Furcadia Dream Editor. Additionally, you can access the DS editor in Furcadia if you click Script Editor on the C tab!
Now that you have the DS Editor open, here is a diagram of the different areas:
Like the other Furcadia programs, there are many different areas which include different types of information, so here is a summary of each one and what their purpose is for you.
- Edit Window: This is where you actually write the lines of your DragonSpeak.
- DS Line List: This is where all the different DragonSpeak lines are, separated by category.
- Sidebar DS Manager: This area can help you organize different blocks of your DragonSpeak, and also has a section that has templates (you can make your own template, too), and a section for DragonSpeak Help.
- Toolbar: This area has icons of basic functions for text editing, similar to the menu area.
- Footer: This gives you statistics on your DragonSpeak as you write it.
There is also a section for the Menu! The following sections describe these aspects of the DS Editor in more detail.
The Edit Window is the area of the DragonSpeak editor that you'll be using the most! You can type in here, leave comments, etc. One important thing to note, though, is that all of your DragonSpeak script should be between the two lines that show DSPK V04.00 Furcadia and *Endtriggers* 9999 *Endtriggers*.
The two lines shown in this example are the two lines that you'll start with in all of your new Dreams. In case you're still unsure about DragonSpeak, what these two lines of code tell Furcadia is that whenever anyone downloads your dream and appears, that person should be moved to the coordinates 10x10y in the Dream.
One way (if you're clever with memorizing DS Lines) to quickly add DragonSpeak lines here is to press Ctrl+Spacebar to make the DS lines show up below. Press your Enter key to have one added.
This is where all the lines of DragonSpeak are provided, and they're separated by the 5 categories: causes, additional conditions, areas, filters, and effects. Its purpose is to give you a list of all the lines of DragonSpeak code in all the five groups so that you don't have to memorize them. Double-clicking on any DS line in this window will make a copy of it appear in your Edit window at the current position of the blinking cursor there. This saves you time, so that you don't have to highlight the DS line, copy it, and then paste it into the Edit window yourself.
The Sidebar DS manager has three main functions, which are separated by tabs called Sections, Templates, and DS Help.
The first tab is called Sections, and it is the default tab shown when you open the DS Editor. This is where you can subdivide large blocks of your DragonSpeak so that you can more easily organize it. If you click Entire Document, you'll see all your DragonSpeak without it being separated into sections.
The + and - symbols are buttons to help you add or remove sections of your Dragonspeak. The arrows can help you move sections into a different order. Just click one and then move it up or down via the arrow buttons.
The second tab is called Templates. It contains a few premade templates of commonly used DragonSpeak to help you get started. All you have to do to add a premade template is put your blinking cursor in the Edit Window where you want the template to be inserted, then double click on the template you want. It will then appear in your Edit Window.
You can also save blocks of DragonSpeak here and use them whenever you open your DS Editor. Certain pieces of script that you like to use in all of your dreams are handy to store here. To store a block of DragonSpeak, you simply highlight everything that you want to save in your Edit window. Then you press the + button on the Templates window, and a pop up box will ask you what you want to call the template. Once you have named it, the new template will appear in alphabetical order in the Template window line will appear.
You can delete a template by selecting it with a left click, then pressing the - button.
You can also rename your Template to something more meaningful that you can identify it by. Right click a template and several options will appear, including Rename.
The last tab is called DS Help, which is a handy window that will give you information about most of the DS lines in the DS Line List. You can utilize this by clicking the DS lines in the DS Line list area and seeing the information it provides to explain the uses of a particular DS Line.
The Tool Bar is something similar to what most other programs have. The buttons are essentially quick-click icons for some of the most common functions of the program.
|Open a .ds file that you have already saved.
|Make a brand new .ds file.
|Save the current .ds file that you have open.
|When you highlight some text, you're able to use this button. Using the Cut button will make the highlighted text disappear and be saved in your clipboard. You can only save one group of text in your clipboard at a time.
|When you highlight a group of text, you're able to use this button. Using the Copy button will make a copy of the highlighted text and save it in your clipboard. Remember, you can only save one group of text in your clipboard at a time.
|When you use this button you will make whatever you have saved in your clipboard appear wherever your blinking cursor is in your Edit window. So now you see that you can save a lot of time by using the Copy/Cut & Paste techniques in order to move text around and/or make copies of it.
|If you make a mistake, you can press this button to revert back to how your .ds file was before you made that last change. It's handy if you accidentally delete some text, etc.
|If you press Undo and decide to go back to the way it was before, you can press Redo to put it back to the way it was.
|Find & Replace
|Find a specific word or set of words in your DragonSpeak text. There is also the option to Replace those specified words with another word.
This section of the Editor contains real time information about your DragonSpeak as you type it. The first bit of information shows the place in the screen - similar to the x, y of the Dream editor. So, for instance, 5:1 would be 5th line, first space. The second slot is to show if you need to save your DragonSpeak: basically, if you change something, the word "modified" will show up. After that is "Sel". This is related to what you have selected, and the number is how many characters are selected. Finally, the # lines displayed are the number of lines of DragonSpeak written in your whole file.
- Gives you the standard options of New, Open, Recent, Save, Save As, and Exit.
- You can also Export your DragonSpeak to an HTML file for a website.
- Offers you the standard Cut, Copy, Paste, Undo, and Redo options.
- The Select All option makes all your text highlighted.
- You also have the Find and Replace, and Find Next commands which you can use to find/change certain text words in your .ds file.
- Checking Block Selection is a neat text selection feature which will allow you to select characters in a grid-like fashion.
- Selecting the Hide/Show Line Finder to be visible is a really useful tool to help you find a specific line. The search bar will then appear above the DS Line List.
- Click Fix Indentation to have a helpful tool to improve the readability of your DragonSpeak. It makes all the DS lines you wrote have uniform indents.
- You can have a bunch of highlighted DragonSpeak lines be commented out (this means to tell Furcadia to not include the DragonSpeak) if you select Auto Comment on/off.
- Jump to DS Line lets you pick a certain line number that you want to view, and then moves your Edit Window to view it.
- Show All means to show you every single DragonSpeak line that is available in the DS Line List.
- You can pick between the other levels listed to hide some of the more complex DragonSpeak lines.
- If you click to the left of any of your DragonSpeak lines in the Edit Window, you'll see you can leave a red dot, or Mark. This menu section lets you navigate through any of your marked DS lines quickly.
- Clear All is a tool to remove all of your red dot marks on your DragonSpeak.
- Sound Preview is a way for you to check a default Furcadia sound with its corresponding number.
- Insert Number is actually a neat convertor for you to use if you want to know what a number would be in Roman numerals, binary, or hex.
- The DragonSpeak Wizard is one of the most useful tools of the whole editor: You can choose a set of DragonSpeak that has been pre-scripted and just enter in your custom patch numbers or coordinates to get fully functioning, pre-written DragonSpeak in your Dream right away!
- Variables is a handy reference window which shows you all the variable names you've used so far so you can keep track. Variables are a part of somewhat more advanced DragonSpeak usage, so don't worry if you don't know what that means yet.
- Real Lines of DS is useful to know because Dreams actually have a DragonSpeak line limit depending on the type of Group Package you have.
- Editor Setup is essentially your settings or preferences for the DragonSpeak Constructor layout, color scheme, etc. Feel free to play around with that to fit your needs.
- The next three options basically can hide the other sections of the DragonSpeak Constructor temporarily.
- This menu has a lot of web sources to grab for help if you need it!
That's it for the DS Editor program. This program offers you many tools to edit your DragonSpeak, and hopefully this page helped clear up just how some of those tools work. DragonSpeak is a wonderful way to add magic and life to your dreams, so you'll probably be using this program a lot. If you have any further questions about it, please make sure that the information isn't found anywhere else in these guides and then feel free to contact the Beekins in game by saying help I need a mason!